Cyproheptadine for dogs is an antihistamine used to control allergy symptoms. Veterinarians more commonly prescribe it for cats, though they may use it to treat dogs, as well. In cats, the drug helps stimulate the appetite, but this does not happen in dogs.
Cyproheptadine is sometimes known by the brand name Periactin, and you can only get it with a prescription from a vet, though the FDA has not approved it for veterinary use. Side effects of the drug are typically minimal, which can make it useful for dogs who suffer side effects from other antihistamines.
If your veterinarian prescribes this drug, follow their instructions for use and dosage carefully and monitor your dog closely for concerning reactions or side effects.
Here’s what you should know about the uses, dosage, and side effects of cyproheptadine for dogs.
Uses Of Cyproheptadine For Dogs
In addition to being an antihistamine, it also can act as an anti-serotonin drug, which can be helpful in treating Cushing’s disease. Cats feel this effect more strongly, which is why vets commonly prescribe it as an appetite stimulant to felines.
This drug is a particularly strong antihistamine, which is why you must follow dosage instructions closely. Because of cyproheptadine’s minimal side effects, vets usually prescribe it to dogs who’ve had a bad reaction to other allergy medications.
Dosage Of Cyproheptadine For Dogs
The usual dosage of cyproheptadine to treat allergies in dogs is 0.15 mg to 1 mg per pound of body weight given twice a day. The drug comes in the form of 4 mg tablets or 2 mg per 5 ml syrup.
You should follow your vet’s instructions closely for dosing, as they may alter the dosage depending on your dog’s reaction to the drug.
You should also follow your vet’s treatment plan for the entire duration, even if allergy symptoms improve.
Side Effects Of Cyproheptadine For Dogs
Cyproheptadine is generally safe for dogs with a veterinarian’s prescription; however, some dogs have experienced side effects when taking the drug.
If you see signs of the following side effects, consult your vet, as they may wish to alter the dosage or seek a different form of treatment:
- Stomach sensitivity
- Dry mouth
- Increased heart rate
- Increased appetite
Before giving cyproheptadine to your dog, make your vet aware of any other medical conditions your dog may have, especially glaucoma, prostate gland enlargement, heart failure, and gastrointestinal obstructions.
Also, notify your vet of any medications your dog is taking, as these may decrease the effectiveness or react poorly with cyproheptadine. Caution should be used when giving the medication to pregnant or lactating dogs.
As with all medications, there’s a risk of allergic reaction that can lead to anaphylaxis, a potentially deadly condition. If you see the signs of an allergic reaction in your dog, including swelling, hives, itchiness, difficulty breathing, or other allergy symptoms, contact your vet right away and stop giving the drug to your dog.
Has your dog ever taken cyproheptadine? Did it help your dog’s allergy symptoms? Let us know in the comments below!